By Ryan Alfieri, Editor
Without question, lack of depth at the receiver position was one of the biggest reasons for the Jets’ 6-10 record last season. Despite the fact that the team will be getting Santonio Holmes back from injury and Stephen Hill will no longer be a rookie, adding young talent at the skill positions has to be a top priority.
Patton is one of the fastest risers in the after a strong showing at the Senior Bowl and should continue to rise as the draft process continues. Here is a breakdown of the strengths and weaknesses of Patton’s game:
Strengths: Patton reminds me of Steve Johnson in several aspects of his game, starting with his ability to get off the line so quickly and put cornerbacks on their heels with his lateral movement. If you don’t get a hand on Patton, he is going to get open.
Even when you do try to put hands on his, he has enough strength to fight it off. He consistently makes catches away from his body. He has great balance and body control along the sideline. He is not exactly Larry Fitzgerald or Calvin Johnson in jump-ball situations, but he competes his heart out for every pass.
Weaknesses: The biggest knock on Patton is his lack of elite speed and explosion in and out of breaks. While he is certainly great in his release off the line, he is not truly explosive out of breaks. He gains separation with his route-running ability rather than his incredible physical skills.
He also has occasional lapses in concentration that lead to occasional drops.
Where he fits in the NFL: Patton has a bit of a unique skill set in that he was an outside receiver at LA Tech, but he may be more suited for the slot position in the NFL.
Patton will be able to make an impact immediately because of his blend of athleticism and route-running ability, but he does have a bit of a limited ceiling because of his lack of elite speed and explosiveness.
Yes, the Jets already have a rising star at slot receiver in Jeremy Kerley, but as we found out last year, having too many offensive weapons is never a problem. If Patton lives up to his billing, he will be an asset to any offense, especially one that is talent-depleted as the Jets.